I believe in photography – but more than that I believe in photographs. Printed photographs are tangible. We can hold on to them, pass them around, frame them and hang them on a wall. We can showcase them in beautiful albums and storybooks to be treasured and looked through by our children, for years to come.
We can’t touch a file and the truth is we don’t know the longevity of a file or if we will even be able to find it someday. A digital file is a bit of a mystery – if it’s lost, where did it go? If a drive is damaged what happens to the files? How many people truly back up all their images?
What happened to disc cameras, eight-track tapes, Walkman’s and other technology we thought would last forever? What will our grandchildren be looking at in 20 or 30 years?
Photographs are special – files are not!
I believe in professionally printing my imagery. I believe my work is more than a screen saver. Years of studying and perfecting my craft comes down to more than sending files via the internet.
The photographs I create for my clients are not only precious to my clients but they are precious to me. It is my body of work, a lifetime of art and imagery that deserves to be printed. Photographs are passed on to children and grandchildren, to great grandchildren. Can you imagine a floppy disk, a DVD or a flash drive sitting in a frame representing your family portraits?
Like many photographers, I have struggled with bending to the needs or wants of clientele that is looking for files. But this is what I discovered over the last year – It makes me uncomfortable in the center of my gut to hand over digital files no matter the price. Clients have told me that the DVD is still sitting on a desk and they should have had me make the prints in the first place because they never have time to get to it.
I wonder about those files that were sold…. How were they printed? Did the client crop it too tight? Is the color correct? Did they attempt to alter the image? It troubles me because I put so much of myself into mastering my captures. And, I have to wonder… am I really acting as a professional and serving my client the best way I know how to by simply selling intangible files that may never be printed?
For some, it’s easy…. take some photos, edit them, burn them on a disk or flash drive and make a few bucks. I care too much about my clients and future generations that might have no photographs.
I’m taking a stand! I am a photographer! I am without a doubt passionate about creating photographs – real pictures – printed on professional papers – and made into beautiful keepsakes. I want your family, your children, and their future grandchildren looking at and holding onto photographs, not just today’s latest gadget.
It has taken deep soul searching, a lot of thought and time to define the value of my work. I am taking a strong stand for printing my photographs.
If being a business owner photographer today means the current market will force me to sell files not photographs and to compromise my values – well then, I’m out.
But, that won’t happen! I know it won’t because I know there are clients that do understand and have the same values. They respect the value I have placed on my art and actually want printed tangible photographic products.
I am Crystal Nadeau, a professional photographer – I believe in and value photography and the images we leave for our children. My work – your portraits & storybooks – will be professionally printed to my stringent archival standards. They will be available to frame and touch in keepsake items like albums… The portraits I create for you will not become displayed ONLY in a computer, that is, if you even get them that far. I pledge to work hard for my clients, who work hard for their families and it’s with pride in my skills that I simply won’t allow that to happen to them. I will not take the risk that in 20 years we will be a generation of lost photographs.
There I stand!